Target eyes new site in Swansea

Jay Pateakos

Rising from the ashes of a deal that never materialized at the Tilcon Capaldi site, national retailer Target is eyeing the former Building 19 site for its newest store.

But RK Associates Vice President David Katz, whose firm owns the property, said there are still many pieces that must fall into place before Target’s bullseye sign will be seen along Route 6.

Town Planner Steve Antinelli said RK developers plans to meet with the town’s zoning board in early December to discuss parking and placement of signs. Antinelli said the proposed plan is to demolish the existing structure and build a new 134,000-square-foot building that will be attached to other businesses in the plaza.

Katz said he was still calculating the number of parking spaces needed for the site. Katz said there are currently two sign boards along Route 6, including one at the east end of the parking lot near Quick Lube. Katz said he will ask the zoning board for permission to move one of the signs to Milford Road, where there is another entrance to the plaza.

Katz said the construction of a Target store could coincide with installation of traffic lights at the intersection, should the measure be approved by MassHighway soon. Work on traffic lights and the road is planned for spring.

Antinelli said plans for Route 6 near the intersection will call for two lanes, eastbound and westbound. A third turning lane will be established to allow eastbound motorists to turn into the plaza. He also said the eastern entrance of the plaza will be reconfigured to prevent motorists from taking lefthand turns out of the plaza.

Katz said a Target deal is not yet finalized. He said many decisions have yet to come from the town and that decisions could make or break a deal. Numerous permits will be needed to demolish the existing building and construct a new one.

“I know there might be developers that would pound their chest and give a big speech after this, but I’m still very paranoid and realize there is still a lot of work left to do,” said Katz. “This is something that will be great for the town, local shoppers and the surrounding businesses, but it’s premature to celebrate until we meet all our benchmarks. With the tough economy, I’m always looking over my shoulder to see when the next shoe will drop.”

Katz said if the plan is approved, he hopes to start work on the site by spring, with an opening date planned for late 2011.

Target was once considered for the Swansea Commons site plan, which also included a Lowe’s and a restaurant at the Tilcon Capaldi site across the street from the Building 19 plaza.Target pulled out of those plans in April but had been rumored to be looking for another site in town.

Swansea Mall General Manager Jason Huer said, coupled with the Wal-Mart Supercenter set to be built at the mall, a new Target would provide a more balanced shopping experience for consumers.

“It would be a great addition to the market and catalyst for future development,” said Huer.

E-mail Jay Pateakos atjpateakos@heraldnews.com.